To the uninitiated, drumming may seem like the artless act of a child. A part of music that many see as simple enough for anyone to do; just beat the skins with sticks, mallets or hands. Because of this misconception, drummers may have the worst reputation of all musicians. From the high school marching band drummer to "Animal" from the Muppet Show, drummers are often seen as unintelligent, lacking "real" talent or as just plain crazy. While the latter is still up for debate, these drummer stereotypes are clearly based in the fear of the awesomeness that drummers really contain.
Want to know what people really think? We have a quick and easy drummer stereotype guide that can help even Mensa drummers fit these molds of musical mayhem.
Hippie Drummer: Drummer for peace, harmony and free love. These drummers, armed with headbands, tie dye and Djembes have the ability to sit outside in the rain for extended periods of time, beating away on every type of hand drum imaginable. Hippie drummers have made drum circles what they are today: major events of mud, nudity and pods of Dead Heads. Its ok, you can be jealous.
Stoner Drummer: A combination of the hippie drummer and rocker drummer, stoner drummers are the reason why grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches are sold from the back of vans across the world. The stoner drummer may seem entranced with the music, a force of pragmatic dedication to the rhythmic nuances of the backbeat, but really, these drummers have left the planet and are riding a cosmic drumming wave of epic proportion.
Rocker Drummer: Long hair, sweat and an expression of utter chaos have given the rocker drummer a place in the heart of groupies and fans everywhere. These drummers, likened to marathon runners, personify each and every stereotype out there in a clandestine goal to take over the world through hypnotic rhythm and gut-wrenching solos. Rocker drummers are unstoppable, potentially dangerous and speak softly… because they carry big sticks.
Jazz Drummer: Innocently tapping away at the hi-hat, the jazz drummer is the master of creativity and multi-tasking in music. Laid back, cool and aloof, these drummers quietly sit at the back of the stage, keeping the beat while psychologically analyzing each member of the band, the audience and the world at large. Don’t let the sunglasses fool you, those “unauthorized” tell-all books are written by jazz drummers.
Marching Band Drummer: From the reputation as a geek to the realization that marching band drummers don’t have many career opportunities past college, these are the drummers that end up managing artists, producing music, and generally running the world of music. Marching band drummers also have great posture and an affinity for hats, and are extremely dexterous when moving furniture.
Rock Band Drummer: The video gamer that threw away a moderate level of musical talent by partying too hard has but one choice, to pick up the sticks and bang away on a rubber set of drums in front of a large television. Yes, these are the drum masters of the living room, competing on a ladder of other wanna-be drummers for world recognition of their talent. To their credit, most have day jobs and electricity, unlike the rest of the drummers.
What a drummer really is cannot be contained in a simple stereotype or even in one type of music, and all drummers get props for ignoring the haters and keeping the beat alive. What few understand is that it is the drummer’s passion that creeps into the rest of the circle, band or group, whether they like it or not. Drummers know this, and most are happy enough to sit back, bang a few skins, and revel in the full power of music that is only within their reach.